527 North Grand Avenue St. Louis, Missouri 63103
In Glass Menagerie:
TOM: Yes, movies! Look at them — [A wave toward the marvels of Grand Avenue.] All of those glamorous people — having adventures — hogging it all, gobbling the whole thing up! You know what happens? People go to the movies instead of moving! Hollywood characters are supposed to have all the adventures for everybody in America, while everybody in America sits in a dark room and watches them have them!” Page 131
In Real Life:
I took the cue from Tom Wingfield in Glass Menagerie and looked toward Grand Avenue and I did find a theater – a nice one – the Fox Theater. I have no proof the Fox is the theater Tennessee Williams was thinking about when he wrote about, “all those Americans sitting in the dark.” However, this website says it was one of William’s favorite places and I believe everything I read on the web – don’t you? Just kidding. Anyway the theater opened its doors in 1929 when Williams was ten years old and when movies in America were a fantastic past time. So, I could see how it would be listed as one of his favorite places. The theater enjoyed almost 50 good years – until 1978 when it closed down. Then – in 1982 a renovation project began. Today it’s back in business and it’s quite beautiful. Incidentally – I’ve seen what can happen when a Fox Theater is revitalized. In Oakland, California – my hometown – the Fox recently reopened and pumped life back into Uptown Oakland, turning it into a fun place to eat and drink and go to a concert.